Young media talents called to submit applications to Stars4Media

2021-02-18. The second edition of the Stars4Media exchange and coaching programme is now open to young media professionals who seek to develop new editorial products or test innovative ideas. The call for applications is open to European journalists and news organisations until 1 July 2021.

by Vincent Peyrègne | February 18, 2021

Stars4Media is an exchange and training programme for young news media professionals in Europe. The one-year programme supports and coaches more than a hundred talented “rising stars” to develop project-based sustainable innovation and encourage cross-border collaboration between European news organisation. The first edition started at the end of 2019, shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite a turbulent year, it successfully supported 105 media professionals from 42 media outlets in 17 European countries.

The programme is born with the ambition to make the media sector more sustainable by fostering innovation and quality journalism and building new partnerships between media organisations across Europe.

Co-funded by the EU, Stars4media is coordinated by VUB (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) in partnership with WAN-IFRA, Europe’s MediaLab (Fondation EURACTIV), and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ). They came together around the same belief: media organisations and professionals, facing similar challenges, should be given opportunities to learn from each other and benefit from cross-border collaboration.

Stars4Media allows media professionals (reporters, web developers, AI experts…) to work during four months on an innovative collaborative project, involving at least two media organisations from two different EU countries to cooperate at editorial, technological or organisational levels. In addition, Stars4Media provides guidance, coaching and training thanks to a pool of media professionals experts in their field. Read more about coaching opportunities here. Media organisations and journalists can participate with a multidisciplinary team to address one of the following topics:

  • Journalism, Trust and Participation
  • Media Technology and Marketing
  • Other Innovations

Interested media professionals, journalists and media organisations can read the Call for initiatives and submit an application by the two deadlines: May 1st, 2021 and July 1st, 2021. Following the two deadlines for submission, an independent jury composed of media experts will select the proposals for initiatives which will receive funding.

All information about the application process can be found on

ABOUT STARS4MEDIA Stars4Media stimulates media innovation and cross-border collaboration in Europe. A cross-disciplinary programme, Stars4Media will sponsor projects developed by journalists, graphic designers, social media managers, technology or product developers, and marketing experts. 185 young media professionals with 2 to 10 years of media experience will participate in the programme through ideation, skill-building assistance and concrete product development in four key areas: constructive journalism, data-journalism, artificial intelligence, and language technologies. The project is co-funded by the EU and coordinated by VUB (SMIT-Imec at Vrije Universiteit Brussel), with the support of Fondation EURACTIV, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), and WAN-IFRA, the World Association of News Publishers.

ABOUT WAN-IFRA’s GLOBAL ALLIANCE FOR MEDIA INNOVATION. The Global Alliance for Media Innovation (GAMI) leads the Stars4Media Programme at WAN-IFRA. GAMI is the network for innovation within WAN-IFRA. With GAMI, WAN-IFRA provides its members with new ideas and applied research by bringing the outside in, looking beyond what is already known. GAMI supports and coordinates international research and innovation programmes. The Alliance develops platforms for news publishers to better work and to engage with emerging technology entrepreneurs and innovation centres. Its goal is to rapidly advance new technologies and talents to the market and lead to a better economy of scales for news publishers and tech companies in developing and acquiring the next level of innovation tools.

ABOUT WAN-IFRA WAN-IFRA is the World Association of News Publishers. Based in Paris and Frankfurt, with regional offices in Chennai, Singapore, and Mexico City, its mission is to protect the rights of journalists and publishers around the world to operate independent media. WAN-IFRA provides its members with expertise and services to innovate and prosper in a digital world and perform their crucial role in society. With formal representative status at the United Nations, UNESCO and the Council of Europe, it derives its authority from its global network of leading news publishing companies and technology entrepreneurs, and its legitimacy from its 80 national association members representing 18,000 publications in 120 countries.


For inquiries, please contact Stephen Fozard, Project Director Global Alliance for Media Innovation, WAN-IFRA  | Stars4Media

Vincent Peyrègne

Vincent Peyrègne took up duties as Chief Executive Officer of WAN-IFRA in 2012. Prior to joining WAN-IFRA, he was Head of Development at Edipresse in Switzerland (now Tamedia) with responsibility for audience insights, editorial marketing research and product development, before joining the office of the French Ministry of Culture and Communication.

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